nep-gen New Economics Papers
on Gender
Issue of 2018‒06‒25
four papers chosen by
Jan Sauermann
Stockholms universitet

  1. Just like a Woman? New Comparative Evidence on the Gender Income Gap across Eastern Europe and Central Asia By Blunch, Niels-Hugo
  2. A Tilt Toward Equality? Gender and Allocation in Horizontal Organizations By Sterling, Adina; Perry-Smith, J.
  3. Judicial Politics and Sentencing Decisions By Alma Cohen; Crystal Yang
  4. Leading by Doing: How Female Supervisors Motivate Worker Productivity through Subordinate Scut Work By Ranganathan, Aruna; Shivaram, Ranjitha

  1. By: Blunch, Niels-Hugo (Washington and Lee University)
    Abstract: I examine the incidence and determinants of the gender income gap in Kazakhstan, Macedonia, Moldova, Serbia, Tajikistan, and Ukraine using recent household data based on an identical survey instrument across countries. Four main results are established, using a range of estimators, including OLS, interval regression, and quantile regression: (1) the presence of a substantively large gender income gap (favoring males) in all six countries; (2) some evidence of a gender-related glass ceiling in some of these countries; (3) some evidence that endowments diminish the income gaps, while the returns to characteristics increase the gaps; and (4) while observed individual characteristics explain part of the gaps, a substantial part of the income gap is left unexplained. In sum, these results are consistent with the presence of income discrimination towards females but at the same time also point towards the importance of continued attention towards institutions and economic policy for decreasing the gender income gap in these former formally gender neutral economies—notably through attention towards the maternity and paternity leave system, as well as public provision of child care.
    Keywords: gender, income gap, Oaxaca-Blinder decomposition, detailed decomposition, maternity/paternity leave policies, Eastern Europe and Central Asia
    JEL: J16 J31 J7
    Date: 2018–05
  2. By: Sterling, Adina (Stanford University); Perry-Smith, J. (Emory University)
    Abstract: This paper tackles the intersection of two trends, the increasing prevalence of flat, so-called horizontal organizations and the greater gender diversity of the workers that such organizations employ. We investigate why these organizations may be more equitable in their allocation practices by turning attention to the allocation of individuals into work groups where the social prominence of the members vary. Analysis of data on 3,575 employees working in R&D over a twenty-five year period indicates that performance affects working with socially-prominent employees, and also that women receive better allocation outcomes from their performance than men. We locate this surprising gender-based advantage for women in their numerical rarity, and surmise that once women are no longer rare in organizations this effect dissipates. In an experiment with 710 participants we find support for our proposition. High performing women receive more favorable allocation outcomes than equally high performing men, but only when women are numerically rare. These two studies inform our understanding of how new ways of organizing intersect with organizational demography and gender diversity, and why, even if there is a tilt toward equality this may decelerate with greater entry of women into horizontal organizations.
    Date: 2017–09
  3. By: Alma Cohen; Crystal Yang
    Abstract: This paper investigates whether judge political affiliation contributes to racial and gender disparities in sentencing using data on over 500,000 federal defendants linked to sentencing judge. Exploiting random case assignment, we find that Republican-appointed judges sentence black defendants to 3.0 more months than similar non-blacks and female defendants to 2.0 fewer months than similar males compared to Democratic-appointed judges, 65 percent of the baseline racial sentence gap and 17 percent of the baseline gender sentence gap, respectively. These differences cannot be explained by other judge characteristics and grow substantially larger when judges are granted more discretion.
    JEL: H1 J15 J71 K0 K14
    Date: 2018–05
  4. By: Ranganathan, Aruna (Stanford University); Shivaram, Ranjitha (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)
    Abstract: Using ethnographic, personnel, and field experimental data from an Indian garment factory, this paper investigates whether manager gender affects worker productivity and if so, how. We argue that female managers motivate greater worker productivity than male managers in female-typed workplaces by performing subordinate scut work--routine tasks of their subordinates--which increases subordinates' engagement with their work. We posit that female managers are more likely to do subordinate scut work in female-typed workplaces and are more effective than male managers when they do, given the female-typing of their subordinates' tasks. Our qualitative data help to generate hypotheses that we test using (a) personnel data on individual worker productivity, where workers experience quasi-random switches between male and female supervisors, and (b) a lab-in-the-field experiment, where we experimentally manipulate supervisors* ability to perform subordinate scut work. This paper contributes to the literature on motivating worker productivity by drawing attention to the important role of manager gender and by studying a female-typed workplace. The paper also contributes to the literature on gender and leadership by investigating objective worker productivity and uncovering subordinate scut work as a novel managerial practice that fosters engagement with work and improves worker productivity.
    Date: 2017–10

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